FIRST WINERY OF PORTUGAL
The renowned winery of Jose Maria da Fonseca is the first company in Portugal to obtain the sustainability certificate after an in-depth analysis and consulting period. The company thereby extends and builds upon prior activities in environmental and quality management. FAIR’N GREEN began as a project among German wineries in 2013 but has meanwhile certified almost 100 companies in 7 countries.
“Sustainability has been part of the DNA of José Maria da Fonseca for many decades. Being a 7-generation company, we see sustainability as the only way for the next generations of the family to have a viable company that is managed responsibly in the areas of environment, social and economic”, explains Antonio Soares Franco, the CEO of the family-owned business. “Based on our philosophy as a company it was logical for us to expand towards a holistic sustainability certification which helps us improve systematically over time. We really look forward to exchanging ideas with other members of the FAIR’N GREEN network” , he adds.
The company of Jose Maria da Fonseca has been actively involved in several noteworthy sustainability activities in the past such as working in an integrated protection system in its vineyards, wastewater recycling, environmental management, energy and water consumption reduction programs, employee training and several social projects in the community. It was also the first wine company in Portugal to receive the ISO 14001 environmental certification. Jose Maria da Fonseca covers different brands and the first volume to be included into the FAIR’N GREEN-certification is one of the flagship products of the company “Periquita Reserva”. Totaling around 1 million Liters of yearly production this wine is both sold domestically in retail, restaurants, wine bars but also exported to several countries.
“We welcome our first member in Portugal to a growing network of innovative and dynamic wine companies which not only want to wait for politics to decide what to do next, but which want instead help transforming viticulture to become more sustainable from within.”, explains Keith Ulrich, Founder and President of the Board of the FAIR’N GREEN association. “The beauty of working with all kinds of companies across several regions and countries is that we can really create new knowledge: Small companies are often highly innovative, large companies can bring innovations to scale. We believe firmly that our consulting-oriented approach will bring the best effects in the long-run. We are in it for the change in the real world, not to check questions of a list", he elaborates.